Since 1982, young women and men, ages 13 to 17, have partnered with the USC Department of Public Safety (DPS) to learn first-hand about law enforcement and emergency services. Cadets first attend an in-depth training academy where they’re immersed in classes on criminal law, community relations, self-defense, and general safety among other topics. Once they’ve successfully completed their studies, recruits apply what they’ve learned to real tasks, performing a variety of community-based, non-hazardous assignments on USC’s campus and throughout Southern California in association with the Los Angeles Police Department.
About the Program
This grant-funded program provides local community youth the opportunity to learn about crime prevention, work side-by-side with local activists and law enforcement, and serve your community. Cadets perform their duties under the supervision of full-time DPS officers who serve as Post Advisors. Cadets will:
- Complete specialized training and physical fitness training
- Attend crime prevention programs
- Assist with traffic and crowd control, including USC football games and special events
- Attend weekly study hall at USC’s tutoring center
- Complete community service projects
- Shadow DPS patrol on scheduled ride-alongs
- Attend regularly scheduled field trips and cadet social events
To apply, candidates must meet the following criteria. Cadet recruits should:
- Be between the ages of 13 and 17 years
- Have at least a C average in school
- Have parental consent to apply
- Have no record of serious arrests or convictions
- Be in good physical condition
- Obtain a medical examination (to qualify for insurance)
Click here to apply now
In addition to the physical and technical requirements listed above, cadet candidates should also:
- Have good moral character and desire to serve the community
- Demonstrate a willingness to participate in cadet activities
- If you meet the criteria outlined above, please send an email including your first and last name to firstname.lastname@example.org letting us know you are interested in the program.
- After receiving your email, a DPS staff member will contact you to confirm your eligibility and schedule an oral interview.
- Following oral interviews, DPS will invite qualified candidates to attend its Cadet Academy.
Recruits must attend and graduate from our Cadet Academy before beginning fieldwork. Academy training:
- Includes approximately 96 hours of academics, physical conditioning and experiential classes at the Los Angeles Police Cadet Academy in Westchester
- Extends over 15 consecutive Saturdays
- Consists of classes on criminal law, community relations, general safety, alcohol/drug awareness, police procedures, drill and ceremonies, physical fitness and character development
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The DPS Cadet Program is sponsored in part by the USC Good Neighbor Campaign.